“[W]hen the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate…”
The Bible doesn’t begin in a pristine setting. Before the garden, what do we see in Genesis chapter 1? Chaos. Formlessness. In a very real sense, the entire Bible is the story of God changing chaos to order; ugliness to beauty; death to life.
And yet, what happens at the beginning? The man and the woman who God placed in the garden to tend it, care for it and extend it to the entire world rebel against God’s command. They eat of the tree that the Lord has forbidden. Instead of trusting God, they trust their own eyes. God had promised death but what words describe Eve’s vision of the forbidden tree? “Good.” “Delight.” “To be desired.”
We face a similar temptation this time of year. We take something that is good – Christmas – and turn it into something it was never meant for. We become obsessed with how our family (or our spouse’s family) and our friends perceive us. We put on a “happy face.” We face the temptation of turning our children into idols who must be appeased. Catalogs and commercials twist what the “good life” is into a creepy amalgamation of Norman Rockwell, Southern Living, the Disney Channel and Pottery Barn – things that aren’t inherently evil but can become corrupted by our covetousness.
Pray that God would use this season of Advent in your life, your family and our church to bring order to what is chaotic. Pray that we would have his perspective on what is truly good, delightful and to be desired.